No matter how clean your home or your pet, at some stage you will face the problem of fleas!
Fleas are small, brown insects that feed on your pet and also on humans. They only spend about 5% of the time on an animal, and the rest of the time they live in the carpets, bedding and any other cosy corner they can find. Each flea can lay up to 50 eggs a day, and each of these eggs can develop into an adult flea in as little as 3 weeks so it's easy to see how an infestation can take hold. As well as causing a number of skin problems for your pet, including severe discomfort and allergic skin disease, fleas can also cause anaemia (iron deficiency) and transmit tapeworm.
Treating fleas requires two actions:
- Treat your pet with an effective flea product - make sure you do not use products intended for dogs on your cat as some are toxic to cats. The flea products we stock are prescription medicines - this means that they have been proven to be both effective and safe. These products need to be used at regular intervals - once you purchase them from us, we will send you text or email reminders to help you remember when it is time for the next dose.
- Treat your house with a suitable environmental insecticide. This will eradicate fleas and their eggs from soft furnishings and bedding to prevent your pets from being re-infested.
Unless you treat both your pets and your house, the flea life cycle will not be broken and you will continue to have a problem with fleas.
Almost all puppies and kittens are born with roundworms, transmitted from their mother. This means that puppies and kittens must first be treated for the worms passed from their mother, and then treated for the worms they pick up in the environment. It is particularly important that your dog is regularly wormed if it comes into contact with children, as one of the roundworms can be transmitted to people.
There are a different types of worms affecting cats and dogs:
- Tapeworm are flat tape-like worms that live in the intestine. Sometimes segments that look like small grains of rice break off the worm and pass out of your pet and may be visible in the fur or bedding. Tapeworm can be caught from fleas or from the environment, e.g. rodents
- Roundworm look like thin white earthworms and can grow up to 10cm in length
- Lungworm is a parasite that can cause serious illness in dogs. Slugs and snails carry the lungworm larvae, and dogs can become infected when they accidentally (or purposefully) eat these common garden pests whilst rummaging through undergrowth, eating grass, drinking from puddles or outdoor water bowls, or pick them up from their toys. The adult lungworms move through the dog's body to live in the heart and blood vessels.